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LWC Women's Basketball season ends in NAIA First Round

Season over with 60-42 loss to Montana State-Northern in NAIA First Round. Blue Raiders record season lows in both field-goal percentage (24.1 percent) and total points (42)

By Charles Balcom

INDEPENDENCE, MO - The Lindsey Wilson women's basketball team saw their 2014-15 season come to an end on Tuesday night with a 60-42 loss to Montana State-Northern in the NAIA National Championship First Round at the Independence Events Center.

The No. 21-ranked Blue Raiders (21-10) struggled the entire game to get things going offensively, eventually finishing with a season low field-goal percentage of 24.1 percent. The 42 total points is also a season low for Lindsey Wilson.

After not losing more than two games in a row for the majority of the season, the Blue Raiders lose their fourth straight to conclude the 2014-15 campaign.

No. 10 Montana State-Northern (28-5) dominated the paint on both ends of the floor thanks in large part to A'Jha Edwards.

The six-foot-five forward kept the Blue Raider offense out of the lane for most of the game while pouring in a game-high 25 points on the offensive end.

Lindsey Wilson was unable to penetrate the interior Skylight defense and elected to settle for mid-range jumpers that missed the mark.

Both teams started slow as they combined for just six total points four minutes into the game. The sixth-seeded Blue Raiders did manage to build a 15-10 lead after a pair of Ranika Rone free throws. Lindsey Wilson made eight of their first 10 attempts from the charity stripe, something they had struggled with during their three-game losing streak coming into the game.

But everything changed after those free throws at the 10:56 mark as the Blue Raiders scored just three more points the remainder of the half as the shooting woes continued to haunt Lindsey Wilson. The next Blue Raider basket, which would also be their final basket of the half, came when Kasey Young knocked down a three pointer at the 4:57 mark.

The third-seeded Skylights did not hesitate to take advantage of the poor shooting performance and went on a 20-3 run to close out the half and take a 30-18 lead into halftime.

Through the first 20 minutes Lindsey Wilson managed to make just 4-of-26 shots from the field (15.4 percent), including a 2-of-9 mark from beyond the arc. Meanwhile, Montana-State Northern shot 42.9 percent (12-28) from the floor, 16 of their 30 points scored by Edwards who averages 16.8 points per game.

As the second half began, Kayla Richardson made a pair of free throws to cut the lead to 10 at 30-20, but from that point on it would be all Skylights.

Montana State-Northern proceeded to go on a 19-8 run and build a 21-point lead, their largest of the game, with 10:27 to play.

The Blue Raiders were unable to string together quality scoring possessions and did not have an answer for the powerful Edwards on the defensive end.

Lindsey Wilson got no closer than 17 points for the remainder of the game as the Skylights cruised to the 60-42 victory.

The Blue Raiders made just 13-of-54 shots (24.1 percent) and went 4-of-17 from three-point range.

The season low shooting percentage surpasses the 27.8 mark set in a loss to Berea (Ky.) on Feb. 24, while the points total passes the 48 scored in a loss at Cumberland (Tenn.) on February 26.

Montana State-Northern shot 46.2 percent (24-52) from the floor in the win, winning the rebounding battle 42-34.

Chanel Roberts led Lindsey Wilson with 18 points and six rebounds, going 5-for-5 from the free throw line. Richardson and Billie Hearn both finished with six points while Hearn also grabbed six rebounds.

Edwards, who leads the nation with 13.0 rebounds per game, grabbed 16 total boards to go along with her 25 points. Natalee Faupel added 12 points.

The Lindsey Wilson women's basketball team concludes the 2014-15 season with a 21-10 record.

This story was posted on 2015-03-19 03:40:44
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